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Thinking Skills and Problem Solving

Thinking Skills and Problem Solving
Thinking skills involve the ability to characterize an intentional application such as analysis,
recognition of a problem, inference, evaluation and being able to solve problems. Thinking skills
are very important in the modern world as they help in solving problems which an individual can be
facing in their daily lives. There can be soft skills and hard skills which can be used in solving of
the problems. The skills depend on the strength of an individual and the education which they have
in their training if they have had the ability to attend any. Creativity is a key factor as it leads to
effectiveness in problem solving. There are steps which can be followed in solving of certain
problems. Halimah needs to involve critical thinking in her ability to solve the problem which she is
facing of being in love with the IT technician who is older than her. This is because her parents are
not happy with her decision to be in love with the technician as they have a lot of expectations in
terms of her helping them in the future when she gets employment. She has to solve the problem in
an amicable way such that they can agree without any party being in disagreement ( Wallace, Maker &
Cave, 2004).
Identify and analysis of problem/Issue
Halima Being in love and ready to be married to the IT technician in their college is an issue. This is because
Halima has been considered to be too young to be married to the technician. The age difference is too much to be just
ignored hence the need to avoid by all means if she can. The requirement is that she should be through with her
studies in order to start working and help her family. The problem can be solved by Halima being willing to litsen to her
parents who will then guide her in order to avoid any conflict that could emerge in the future. He IT technician should
also be reasonate with Halima and advice her to wait such that they can marry in the future when the right time come
for both Halima and the IT technician. In this case therefore both Halima and the parents will be in agreement and
stop complaining about the behavior which are being portrayed by Halima. They should not have organized for a
marriage that soon given that the parents of Halima have not approved the realationship (Elliott, Oty, McArthur &
Clark, 2001).
Halima is the eldest child in their family and she is required to help her younger brothers and sisters in their
family once she is done with college. This is a challenge that requires her to think critically and the possible ways
through which she can help her family rather than after finishing college. The fact that she is in deep love with the IT
technician portrays a message that she is willing to in that relation come what may. Therefore, they can solve the
problem through the IT technician being in the position to provide for the family as she could do while she is on
employment. In this way then wheile she is married, it could not be a big deal for her to play the role she had to play
while in employment (Puccio, Murdock & Mance, 2005)
Johan is required to advice Halima which he is not doing as IT technician in the college. He is required to play
the role of a parent instead of proposing for a marriage in the following which Halima could not have completed he
college studies. This is quite challeng for a young Halima who is 10 year younger than Johan.
Application of the four stages in problem solving
Problem solving process can be divided into four stages which have various labels. It becomes easy to
understand a problem thus making it successful. One needs to identify the problem then going to finding a possible
solution, choosing the best solution and implementing the problem.
Identification and definition of the problem. It is the first step that needs to be taken in order to solve the problem.
The problem that is in context is recognised in order to know how many of such roblem so exist. It should not await
until a problem is serious in order to solve it. Specific techniques can be used in order to help in recognizing the
problems and opportunities that will exist as a result of solving the problem. A label can be given to the problem with
a tentative definition. The problem can then be described and the circumstances which surround the problems. The
open-ended provlems are also defined.
Finding Possible solutions
Questions that are closed have a limited number of solutions unlike open-ended questions which have a number of
possible solutions. The best solution is selected from a number of solutions which are presented. The problem that
emanates as a result of a relationship between Halima and Johan is closed therefore a limited number of solutions can
exist such as the technician being able to wait for Halima to complete school. Analysis needs to be done to the
problem in order to find possible solutions and a real cause is confirmed. Construction of the courses and possible
solutions is also necessary (Carson, 2007).
Choosing the best solution
Evaluation is done in order to find possible solutions as well the selection of the possible and most effective ways in
which a problem can be solved. The features of ideal solution are provided such as advicing the technician to wait for
Halima to finish college. Elimination of the solutions that can be against an ideal solution. Evaluation and remaining of
the solutions which leads to best outcome and making of decision on how to implement the final problem.
Implementing the solution
it can involve sperate solutions such as planning and preparing of the solution to be implemented. Appropriate action
being undertaken to monitor the effects and reviewing of the success of the action that will be taken. It culminates all
the efforts that need to be taken in order to have a careful planning. There is the description of the process that has to
be followed in the implementation of the problem that is stated. Smooth monitoring od the situation should be put
into consideration in order to have the final solution being in agreement with the needs. The possible solutions in
regard to the relationship of Halima have to be considered carefully in order to have the best solution (Palincsar &
Brown, 1988).
Relate to the Evidence-Driven Decision-Making Cycle
process has
a sequence
of steps
which have
to be solved
in a circular
manner. The
first stage of
the process
begins with
whatever an
thinks. The
data and
ideas help in
the process
of action
which is
stage. It can
be used in
the process
of finding
the patterns
and trens
which are
identified in
the process. Exploring is the next stage which gives a preliminary exploration in order to pinpoint the issues which
could be in existence. Question which needs to be answered should be discussed in the process (Snyder & Snyder,
Getting information is the middle process which requires to assemble all the data that has been obtained. The
evidence can also be generated in the process. Analysis which involves setting data and relating the evidence that is in
existence enables one to look for the trends which results to answering the questions. There should be care not to
obtain results which are out of scope. Different techniques and methods can be used to find analysis by grouping the
data into different groups which correspond to the techniques which are in existence. Interpretation of the results
follows. It involves the elaboration of the terms which have been used in different contexts and any other important
that coud not be understood by an individual. Clarity of the knowledge that is involved is also done such that insight is
gained in the process. Critical analysis need to be done in order to have important data classified.
Changing and evaluating of the information is the final stage. It can be done by intervening such that a design
and implementation plan is identified to gain suitability. The actions need to be manageable. Evaluation needs to be
done in orde to decide on the evidence and achieve successful intervention that is required. Reflection is also very
important as the knowledge that has been gathered is analyzed. Further investigation can be done in order to suggest
anything that is available. The practice and maintenance has to be analyzes (Wallace, et. Al, 2004).
In conclusion, thinking and problem solving are very important aspects in any proble that can exist either to
an individual or an organization set up. The four stages which are used in solving of the problem can be applied in
order to have the best outcome being witnessed. Halima and Johan should have applied the problem solving
techniques in order to overcome the problem that is at hand. Thus they could help the parents of Johan from
experiencing more problems such as taking care of the young ones who were the brothers and sisters of Halima.
Part 2
The problem in this context is poor performance by the student. This has led
to the emergence of other problems for instance; the dismal performance
could lead to the student possibly not completing her studies in her career
and having a love affair that is not healthy for the student, breaking the
promise that she made to the loved one and possibly the loss of a
relationship. The cascade of these problems will highly have an impact on
the life of the student both, physically, psychologically, spiritually and
socially (Drago, 2004).
The student being a Muslim, she needs to uphold the Muslim doctrines that
states that a person should never engage in sex before they are married.
Furthermore, she is already engaged to someone and the kind of decision
she will make should consider this factor with seriousness.
The age difference between the student and the tutor is a problem on its
own that needs to be looked into when making the decision. In addition, the
learner-tutor relationship also gives the odds of that should be used in the
basis of making a decision.
A tutor who wants sexual gains from the student identifies the problem and
tries to find a quick decision using his coercive power to gain want he wants
from the student. He therefore gives a possible solution to the student’s
problem that will help him gain what he really yearned from the student.
Problem/Issue Identification
The student needs to make a concrete and sound decision on the problem
without falling into the trap from the tutor and this is possible if the student
identifies the problem that is leading to the existence of all other problems
and that is poor academic performance, and look for a long lasting morally
and spiritually acceptable solution. This requires the student’s problem
solving skills.
Problem solving
A number of tools that can be used to solve problems but in this case, Paul
Foster’s five root-cause analysis tools will be used to solve the problem
more effectively. The tools include; the Pareto chart, the five whys, fishbone
diagram, scatters diagram and the failure mode and effects analysis. For the
student in this situation the five whys tool will be more appropriate for
solving her problem (Matsumoto, Yoo & Fontaine, 2008).
The five whys tool is a tool in which the person in the problem asks himself
or herself questions. In this case, the student needs to ask himself or herself
question such has why are they performing so dismally in their academics,
why the lecturer wants to improve their performance, why the lecturer
chose to have a love affair in the exchange
For example, asking why there is such problem will create an insight, what
the problem is and on the loops that can be zipped to curb the problem. In
this case, the possible causes of poor academic performance would be poor
time management or lack of concentration in class or inability to complete
assignments given. The identification of the cause of poor performance in
studies and finding of the appropriate solution will greatly improve the
Also asking why the tutor wants to help the students in bettering her grades
will give the student an picture of what the tutor wants to achieve by so
doing. This will enable the student avoid that solution for the poor
performance for it will lead to a myriad of other problems which can be very
difficult to solve (Bailly, et. Al, 1999).
The student asking himself or herself a question like why the lecturer chose to have a love
affair with the for the favor will lead to the student identifying the motive of the solution
provided and hence a better judgment can be made by the student when making the
decision on solution will be given to the situation. This can lead to the avoidance the
solution that does not solve the problem amicably.
Elaboration on the solution of the problem
The solution which the Muslim student should embrace is to work hard hard in her studies in
order to improve in her academic performance. In this way therefore she would be able to avoid the
tutor who is taking her failure as an advantage to engage her in a relation. The student should also
consider the age of the lecturer which is 40 while she is less than 20 years old. This implies that the
relation cannot last for long instead it is just away to have him being favored because he in charge
of examinations.
She should be consistent in her performance such that it is possible to avoid the lecturer
leading to her failure in the exams. By concentrating on her studies, she will have the capability to
improve in terms of academics leading to avoiding the problem. She can also wait until she is done
with her studies in order to start a relationship as she would be able to concentrate on the
relationship alone rather than the studies. All the problems that are academic related will be solved
for her. The parents can also advice her to work hard in school so that she can proceed to the next
level (Karabenick & Knapp, 19901).
Relationships can be important in the social life of a student but it should be done with a lot
of care which implies that the performance in terms of academics can be affected if a
student concentrates too much on the relationship. It is therefore important to follow the
advice of the parents and teachers as they care a lot about the well-being of the students.
One should make careful choices on who is to engage in a relationship while they are
students because this can affect them in future of their lives (May & Etkina, 2002).
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